Allium sativum (garlic) is widely known and is consumed as a natural prophylactic worldwide. It produces more than 200 identified chemical compounds, with more than 20 different kinds of sulfide compounds. The sulfide compounds particularly are proven to contribute to its various biological roles and pharmacological properties such as antimicrobial, antithrombotic, hypoglycemic, antitumour, and hypolipidemic. Therefore, it is often referred as disease-preventive food. Sulphur-containing compounds from A. sativum are derivatives of S-alkenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxides, ajoene molecules, thiosulfinates, sulfides, and S-allylcysteine. This review presents an overview of the water-soluble and oil-soluble sulphur based phytochemical compounds present in garlic, highlighting their mechanism of action in treating various health conditions. However, its role as a therapeutic agent should be extensively studied as it depends on factors such as the effective dosage and the suitable method of preparation.
Keywords: Allium sativum; cancer; cardiovascular diseases; garlic; obesity; sulphur compounds.